Discipline Though Painful Produces Righteousness


Do you remember all those spankings we used to get as kids? Do you remember the pain your rear felt? I do. I may still have little red dots on my rear from being paddled with one that holes drilled in it for air resistance. But…

That’s not the type of discipline I want to talk about right now, though. I want to talk about self discipline.

Have you have ever been addicted to something and tried to get free? If you have, then you have an idea how painful discipline can be.

If you are walking in freedom from your addiction then you understand the rewards.

But it’s the journey between the two that can be so taxing.

Wanting to be free from any addiction takes strength. But doing the self discipline it takes to be free can be so painful you may feel as if you wish you were dead.

Now, I’ve never done drugs per se but I have heard some horrendous stories from those who have detoxed.

I was a big drinker growing up. And there was a time when I had to do the hard thing of distancing myself from those “friends” who were my drinking partners in order to stop. Some of them didn’t understand, at the time, why I stopped hanging around them. They get it now, as they themselves have had to do the same. It’s not easy to walk away and not look back.

When I stopped watching porn I went through some major withdrawals. The brain can be a very mean beast when you try to deny it of certain things it has grown accustomed to.

I got major headaches. I actually had the shakes for a bit. My brain played scenes over and over in my head trying to make me go back so I could keep the pathway alive.

I didn’t want to keep it alive. I wanted it D E A D!

It did not take days, weeks or months. It took years. And I still struggle. I can’t lie about that. Sex is a part of everyday life. You can’t run from it.

It was hard making a choice not to watch certain shows or movies. It got a lot easier, faster than I thought it would.

It was tough choosing to not look at women unless I had to at work. It was real hard to look away. That got easier as I trained my eyes.

It was extremely hard to stop masturbating when lonely or on those nights when I couldn’t go to sleep, because that’s what I had always done…even if I just had sex with my wife at the time. Yes, you can be lonely and married.

But all those struggles…all that training of my eyes to not take that second look…all those tearful praying sessions were so worth it to be able to walk in the freedom I have now.

It awesome to be walking in freedom. It’s amazing to know what true intimacy means. It’s great to be able to look at a woman and see her and not what porn taught me to see.

It’s good to know that I don’t have to drink in order to have a “good” time.

Thank you Father for your forgiving mercy and grace.

Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.
Romans 6:18 KJV

What was the hardest thing you had to do to be free from your addiction?

How did you discipline your mind and body and deny yourself?

What advice would you give someone who wants to be free but feel as if there is no way out?

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22 thoughts on “Discipline Though Painful Produces Righteousness”

  1. Excellent post Stuart, you are courageous speaking out about your personal life, respect this very much. I am trying to think of an addiction which would be sugar as it is very addictive and destructive to the health, watching TV. I just stopped both not eating sweet foods or watching TV.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Nanette. I have to speak out about the things I went through.. there are still people that actually believe they are alone in their struggles.

      Yeah, I would say just try to stick with the natural sugars. Don’t be a chocoholic like me πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It is great you have to speak out. I am not addictive by nature. I speak out about psychic attack as I have had a great deal to do with this. Also abusive people be them men or women. I have been in abusive relationships. So many struggle with these and like you say they are afraid to ask for help, embarrassed. So many need help in different areas of life. Great what you do.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. What was the hardest thing you had to do to be free from your addiction?
    — Hmmm…completely change my mindset on things like anger, resentment, betrayal, and many other negative emotions I carried with me. I had to learn to let it all go. When that weight was gone, it was a little easier to deal with the problems that really mattered, that I could have some control over, like y addiction.

    How did you discipline your mind and body and deny yourself?
    — I think the concept of “deny myself” is a religious construct created for one to feel righteous. I found embracing cognitive behavioral therapy to have done wonders for me. I’m very rarely triggered now since I did the hard word to teach my mind to see things differently and respond to things differently.

    What advice would you give someone who wants to be free but feel as if there is no way out?
    — Statistically, addiction is part of a bigger problem. 40-50% of addicts have some form of mental illness. 94% of porn addicts report some form of trauma early in their life. If you’re just dealing with the addiction, odds are you’re not dealing with the deeper issues that helped contribute to the addiction. It’s like somebody in a rowboat in the middle of the lake that springs a leak. You can keep bailing water, which doesn’t address the real problem, or you can plug the leak and then do the bailing. I see a lot of people with different addictions who spend their lives bailing, not fixing. These are the ones who seem to relapse the most.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. My resentment and anger issues I didn’t address right away. It wasn’t until I led a 12 step study at Celebrate Recovery that I did those. Helped tremendously.

      I agree that addiction is the result of something else. Sadly most do not realize this to be true…at least not in the beginning of recovery

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Mine are people pleasing, thinking I must be perfect which results in much anxiety, and fear of rejection. I was raised by an alcoholic father in a narcissistic mother. So I easily make idols out of other people. I attract narcissist like bees to honey. They can smell my fear of rejection. And love my people please and willingness to take all the blame. But I am recovering slowly. But picking myself respect and walking away.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I am so impressed that you are able and willing to discuss a very difficult and personal issue with such strength and dignity. I spent years working in a medical setting and this issue is huge…….and not just with men as women are much less likely to report this as a problem. Thank you for your courage and strength and may God bless you for helping others.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I continue to find your authenticity refreshing. And I agree with Wendi that you write and share with strength and dignity. And also grace, love and realness (is that a word?!) You provide me with a glimpse into my husband’s struggle and fight for freedom in a way that doesn’t scare me, but rather helps me understand and have compassion for his healing journey and be able to celebrate his victories with him while removing my expectation of perfection in overcoming his addiction. Thank you Stu.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. This is a great, powerful and inspiring post, Stuart. I like what Joshua Shea said about addiction probably having deeper issues than the surface.

    As I told Keith of Stand Tall For Christ, the hardest thing for me; as you so eloquently put it:

    “The brain can be a very mean beast when you try to deny it of certain things it has grown accustomed to.” AND

    “My brain played scenes over and over in my head trying to make me go back so I could keep the pathway alive.”

    Even when I try to restrain myself from falling back into bad habits, the brain will replay scenes over and over, but it’s thanks to the Lord’s Word that I’m starting to slowly move away from it but the “lingering effects ” are still there.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Joshua. Yes, I agree with Joshua Shea as well. Most addicts do not like digging up the root of the problem. I know I didn’t. Took me a while to get to where I was ready.

      I’m thankful for God’s word. Memorize it. Speak it. Pray it. Keep pressing forward brother.

      Like

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